11.4.18

There is a lot going on right now and I am in a funk.

So today I wanted to discuss the thought of life being fair.

There is stuff that is going on in my family and it brings up some feelings that I just don’t know how to process.  I should be upset, but I’m not.  I really just don’t care about it.

Then I think of something that happened in the past and it makes me angrier.  The most undeserving people are often the ones who receive the most consideration.  And that just pisses me off to the core.

Until tomorrow…

11.3.18

Bonding with strangers.

One of my sister in law’s coworkers came over for dinner with his wife.  I ended up making fast friends with them by sharing our mutual love of food and cooking.  We even traded Instagram account info, so we can keep up with each other’s culinary adventures.

I swear these will get longer and I will stop waiting until the last minute to write.

Withdraw

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve really made an effort to really withdraw from social media.  There are many reasons for this.

  1.  Google and Facebook.  I was utterly disgusted listening to the Senate testimony a few weeks ago.  The company who used to have the principle of “don’t be evil,” is now okay doing things with repressive governments.  I also noticed that GMail, and Facebook were suggesting friends I’d never even considered connecting with apart from private emails on 757.org.  So, the bits of doubt were planted early.  The testimony, the actions of perhaps less-than-honest mining, and politicans who purportedly represent me, I decided to really curtail things.  Well, that combined with;
  2. Politics.  I am at odds with the strains of jubilation from people who view me as a heretic, as well as the even older people who trot out other stupid stuff.  I don’t care.  Really.  Everybody thinks I’m evil because… Again, I don’t care.  I am who I am.  I explore ideas that are contrary to my conclusions.  But I shouldn’t be able to do that.  That I might access things not approved by the commissars is a problem.  I’m free to leave. Well, for now.  The strike-through is intentional;  I can leave, and there’s nothing that can stop me.  This is a problem for both businesses and governments.  Sorry.  The Internet, and the math that underlies it, are things that business and government can’t surpress without resorting to the ultimate weapon of government — force.  Fine.  Whatever. 
  3. When I chose to withdraw from FB, I jettisoned also G+, and LinkedIn.  G+, of course, had a similar data breech to FB.  I was tempted to say, “purportedly it’s shut down,” but i looked around, and it’s still up.  For now. I’ve complained about LinkedIn before, but it seems to be nothing but recruiters these days.  (Aside:  the legion of corporate recruiters is likely attributable to the major increase of folks graduating with Arts degrees.  Spell too well to work as a Barista?  Don’t worry.  You can work in tech staffing!!1!)
  4. Google’s decision to push all traffic in Chrome to SSL is a really bad idea.  Hey, it’s sekur, so nobody can look at it.  Except, of course, the totes didn’t use to be evil company, and the NSA.  You’ve also killed off all the sorts of things developed to make Intertubing faster since the web came into being.  I really don’t care that my people can see what banner ads I’m seeing, and those might be cached somewhere else.

I’m preparing to write again in November.  The summer writing went well this year, but I didn’t feel the need to do it.  There’s periods at work when I’m very busy these days, and don’t have the urge to write to kill time.  But I do miss writing.  As the year ends, I might have more to say.ca

    Thirteen (8/1)

    I was planning to recycle again, but noticed that some of the questions

    I apologize that I really don’t have a ton to say right now.

    Very long day is very long, and my mom is here only for this evening, so I should go socialize.

    So tired.

    On Writing

    I’ve been picking through past writings.  Words used to come so easily;  my diary would show that, if you could read all of it.  (And, no, even if you’ve got an account there, you can’t.  Much of it is only for my own consumption.)

    I’m trying to remember how easily this stuff used to come to me.  Perhaps my inability to really read many things stops the thought flows.  Who knows?

    I listen to lots of podcasts.  I’ve not dug out my radio from where our stuff is stored.  I do listen to some things that are broadcast, but much of it is Intertubes-only.

    I also might not have as much time to think as I’d like.

    Getting closer on my work setup in the temporary landing spot.  Maybe I’ll get it finished soon.  *shrug*

    Reading old entries, I have to wonder if I actually could handle law school now.

    Yes, I can’t see worth a damn.  My speech is even slower than ti twas before they know what was wrong with me.  But I can still listen.  I can still write.  Could I be lawyerly?

    Timid Wave

    Pretty much how I roll these days.

    I do need to figure out where all my archives are, and get them properly restored.

    In many ways, I’m rebuilding from scratch.

    This started this spring when my wife moved to pursue her new job.

    About a month and a half later, I got laid off from the hell I was in.  Our lease was expiring at the end of May, so off to join her.

    I had a job lined up before I left.  They were in the midst of a contract recompete.  I would move, get settled, and travel to the company’s headquarters on the sinister coast for training.

    I barely heard from them on the recompete progress, so I started looking at  for other things.

    I landed one pretty quickly, and agreed to take the gig.  It paid slightly more than the thing that’d gone silent, anyway.  I wasn’t thrilled with the location or work situation (no telecommute at all, versus full telecommute after the training week), but money was starting to get tighter than I’d like.

    The final week of May I spent throwing darts trying to find something, anything, that’d let me back out of the thing to which I’d agreed.

    I finally heard back from the thing with the west coast folks — they lost the contract, but still really wanted me for the role with the new company.

    Um.

    But they weren’t moving quickly at all, so I started the new job.  People were nice, and I think I was trying to figure out what it was they wanted me to do.  They, themselves, didn’t really have a firm grasp about what they were supposed to be doing.  That I had some familiarity with what they were getting into helped, but I didn’t have a firm grasp.

    Last week went okay, and I think I was doing some good work piecing things together.

    Then Monday.  Let’s do this day-by-day…

    Monday:  

    I heard back from the recruiter for the left coast thing.  They’re on Pacific Times, so it must have been about 1030 Eastern.

    The message was along the lines of, “I’m not supposed to be talking to you, but email this guy who’s handling things for the folks who won.”

    As I was composing an email to him, he phoned.

    I had an offer letter by about 1330.

    I start Friday.  I guess some of the folks with the company that had lost the recompete, and had signed on with the winner,  were really excited to get me on the team, still.

    I told my supervisor, who’d told me that I needed to tell him if anything was going on, that I would discuss with my wife, and decide.

    She gave the greenlight, so I accepted.

    I SMS’d the HR manager where I’d been working that I needed to speak to him.

    I’m resigning.  Please work to figure out my last day.

    Tuesday:

    I got into the office a couple of minutes late.  It’s almost as there was some sort of event going on in the District that rich white folks really wanted to see.  After settling in, and getting coffee, I told my boss that I’d decided to accept the position.  The HR folks still hadn’t told me when my last day would be.  So this is probably about 0900.  The HR people didn’t get back to me until probably 1330.

    Oh, he can go now if there’s really not a lot for him to do.  So a bit of tidying up, turning things back in, and I was out the door at 1600.

    Fucking weird.

    I’m writing this now just after noon on Wednesday.

    I am supposed to start the new job Friday morning.

    A grand total of six days on the job.

    What is this, I can’t even…

    But details on the new thing:

    1. I don’t have to travel to train, get support, anything else.  The new overlords are within easy Lyft/Uber distance, but my role is still almost entirely telecommute.
    2. Yes, it pays a bit less than the short-term thing.  But I also get paid time off, and paid Federal holidays.  I also don’t have to spend $30 a day in ride fare.
    3. I’m somewhat excited by the company.  It’s one of the fragments of one of the bigger companies that disinter-grated over the past few years.

    On that last thing, maybe I shouldn’t be.  In 2016, one of the major parties’ candidates railed against the “gig economy.”  (Yes, that might have been the candidate who won all of Virginia’s electoral votes, even though the majority voted against….)

    Nobody works for a company for thirty years anymore.

    Things like health insurance maybe shouldn’t be tied to your very unstable employment?

    But don’t mind me.  My brain’s scarred, and I’m missing my treatment scheduled for today because I moved….

    12.21.17

    I’ve been thinking about something quite a bit lately that I want to get off my chest.  I am very discouraged by people who are dismissive of something another person enjoys, just because they don’t find the same enjoyment from it.
    You don’t enjoy sex?  That doesn’t mean someone who does is a whore or a slut.
    Don’t like a certain type of food?  Don’t say it’s disgusting and make wretching noises because you see someone else enjoying it.
    Don’t like a certain TV show?  Don’t watch it, you don’t need to tell anyone else you don’t like it.
    I guess the point of all of this is that, if someone’s life isn’t affecting you personally, why do you feel the need to have an opinion on it?
    Until next time…

    12.12.17

    Well, maybe next time.  I thought if I didn’t receive an offer I would be devastated.  I feel the exact opposite of that right now.  Although I did get a rejection, I was also given feedback about what to improve and I was strongly encouraged to apply again.  So, I have something that they think would be a fit for them, I just need to improve my articulation and be able to explain how my experience in class will translate to the mission at hand for them.
    But I have a 4 hour train ride ahead of me, so get comfy because it is going to be a long one.  I would talk about the scenery, but it is December so the sun has set at 4:30.  There is a giant Masonic temple at the Alexandria station.  I always use it as a guiding beacon when I go into the district.  There is graffiti under the bridges and I always enjoy looking at it because the people who create it are talented, even if most would consider it vandalism.  There are cows in Woodbridge (who knew?).
    The woman sitting in front of me is on the phone with someone who just lost a loved one.  The flood of “I’m sorries” makes me think about darker Decembers from the past.  It also serves as a reminder that life continues even though we hit bumps in the road.  I know that I am supposed to be in the Northern Virginia area, and I know that whatever I do, I want to support the military or the government in some capacity.  I wish I had known this when I started college nearly 4 years ago, but then I might not have had the experiences that I have had.
    I also think that this trip has been a stepping off point for me.  I can do things on my own and live to tell about it.  I did everything to prepare for this trip mostly independent of help from other people (Of course, my BIL and SIL were a big help transporting me, giving me a place to stay, and helping me with my pitch), but I had to be the one to overcome my fear of what-ifs in order to get here in the first place.
    (The power lines in the river around Quantico have blinking lights on them.  Not the normal lights, but ones that blink in an inverted V pattern and go faster than the usual ones on top of radio towers.  They are also white instead of red).
    Getting back to what I was saying, a few months ago, I wouldn’t have done this.  I would have passed up an opportunity for something that might end up being my dream career because I was unwilling to take risks.  Every important decision I tried to make was a constant barrage of what-if this?, what-if that?, always the negative consequences of something that might happen if I tried.  Well, today I TRIED, I didn’t succeed today from the perspective of going home with a job offer in my hands.  I did succeed in gaining knowledge from my interviewers on what I need to improve and the encouragement to try again.  That was something I had been missing in my job search.
    (Also I enjoy looking at people’s IP names. “Gulag’s Guest” was a favorite.)
    Still looking forward to being home and having tomato basil soup and grilled cheese.
    Then to prep for my interview on Thursday.
    P.s. Amtrak’s Wifi is not that great, so don’t hope to accomplish much if you rely on it.

    12.11.17

    So today is the day before my interview with DIA.  Early start to the morning in order to get the train up to Alexandria, but I made it.  I summoned a Lyft and got to the station with plenty of time to spare.  Then I slept for a good while until I reached my stop.  Now at my SIL and BIL’s place going over what I need to do for tomorrow
    SIL is helping me improve my pitch and I think I may actually be able to knock this thing out of the park tomorrow.  Then it is the 4 o’clock train back home.  It sucks that I don’t get any time in the district on this trip, but if all goes well, I will be getting plenty of time up here.

    30

    I’m finally plunking away at this last one late on the afternoon of the 30th.
    It’s been an experience, but I’ve gotten through once again.
    Seven years.
    Looking back over what I’ve written, though, I’m not terribly upset about what I’ve brought out. Looking back, specifically, at 2012 was probably a good thing for me.
    Today at work, I said something about the importance of having someone review my missives. I do sometimes write things that maybe aren’t immediate applicable. During a revision, however, I wonder how much I bury.
    I really don’t do that, here. What you see is what you get.
    And I got disrupted in writing this. First was this recruiter who looked me up in LinkedIn. It looks interesting. (How many companies do you see on Glassdoor with a 5.0 rating?)
    Then a call from my patient advocate who I probably won’t be able to speak with after my health insurance changes next year.
    So more changes ahead, probably. Whatever. Things are getting better. Are things as good as they were five years ago? Hard to say, really, but I’m excited.